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Simple DIY Headboard for the Guest Room

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DIY Custom Headboard Ideas on a Budget – no wood or power tools needed.

Today I want to show you how I made a DIY headboard for a guest room with a few old display tricks I used back in the day when I worked in retail display. One of my weekly tasks at the store was to make the display beds up using the newest bedding that the store sold.

The display staff had no budget to buy headboards for the beds so we had to use our resources to come up with creative ideas to make the beds look grander than only a mattress and boxspring on a plain bed frame.

DIY headboard that is easy and affordable to make

In my previous house we had a designated guest room, I now have 2 rooms to use when friends and family come to stay with us. I showed you the first one before the holidays. I thought I would decorate that room in a feminine style and this one with a masculine vibe.

I used two sets of sheets. One set on the mattress itself. The fitted sheet from the second set I used to cover the boxspring, the flat sheet became the DIY headboard.

Covering the box spring with the fitted sheet is the best option to hide the boxspring when you don’t want to use a dust ruffle.

When using a platform bed, a box spring is not needed. I used the boxspring though, since I wanted the clean-line look of the platform, but the height of a traditional bed.

The flannel sheets, quilt and throw I found for a bargain at Designer Living.com. They sell brand name bedding and more for 50% off.

Easy to make headboard

The flannel sheet set I will  use in the colder months. Once spring arrives, I will change out the sheets to cotton with a summer like design.

Ideas for Headboards to make

I always like to have a coverlet or throw on the bed so guests can get comfy and take a nap without having to unmake the bed. This one is king size and so soft since it is made with minky fabric.

  • I bought the fur pillows at Marshall’s.
  • The curtain rod for the headboard is from Target.
  • The bench in the bottom right corner of the photo was once a window seat in my daughter’s room.

How to Make a DIY Headboard Using a Bed Sheet

supplies needed:

  • Flat sheet that is the same size as the bed or fabric yardage (Allover or solid fabric are easier to use than a plaid where you will need to make sure the horizontal lines in the design are even across the rod.)
  • Curtain rod
  • Short curtain rod holder so rod will be close to the wall when mounted
  • Screwdriver
  • Measuring tape
  • Bubble level
  • Pencil
  1. Pull the bed away from the wall. Hang the curtain rod above the bed so that the finials are slightly past the width of the bed. Use a bubble level to make sure it is level. I hung my rod 55″ from the floor.
  2. The rod holders that came with the rod positioned the rod too far out from the wall. I needed to replace these with holders that would position the rod no more than 2-inches from the wall. I used old ones from a previous rod. They were white. I painted the holder section of the brackets in oil rubbed bronze and left the back of the brackets white so they would blend in with the wall. A rod holder with a short projection is needed so that the sheet falls straight down against the wall even when the bed is pushed up against it.

Easy to make headboard ideas

3. Once the rod is hung, iron the flat sheet and then drape it over the rod. Bring the ends together along the bottom. You can use safety pins to hold it in place. Fold under one or both side edges of the sheet to get it to the length of the rod.  Make sure you leave enough of the sheet to cover the bracket.

4. Push the bed back up to the wall.

How I Painted the Bed Frame

The king size bed in the room use to be in my youngest daughter’s room in our previous house. She never had a bed frame and had the boxspring and mattress right on the floor. When we moved to the lake I placed them in the room right on the floor. They have been that way until a few weeks ago when I ordered a metal platform bed from Amazon.

I thought about making a platform for the bed, but after some research, I found it was less expensive and a whole lot easier to buy a platform bed frame. The one I liked only came in black. I wanted an oil-rubbed bronze finish, so I painted the frame the day it was delivered using Rustoleum Ultra Cover paint in Metallic Oil-Rubbed Bronze.  I sanded the finish to rough up the surface to provide some tooth for the paint to adhere to. After I cleaned the surface of sanding grit, I applied one light coat of gripping primer and then two light coats of the paint.

How to paint a metal bed frame

Once the paint was dry I got the bed made doing what I did when I worked in retail display.

Completed Room Makeover

Blue accent wall with plaid sheet made into a king size headboard.

I painted the walls since I first made the sheet headboard. I also added a new ceiling fan and plank ceiling.

Another Easy DIY Headboard Ideas

Fast Framework: For another custom-made headboard , convert a blank canvas into over the bed art. Simply stretch bating across the canvas front and secure to the back of the frame using a staple gun. Cover the batting with fabric. Once yard of fabric will cover a 3 x 4 canvas. For a king size bed, – butt two or more canvases togehter.

Sources: affiliate links used

Easy headboard to make for any bed. DIY headboard to make in under 15 minutes.

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23 Comments

  1. You don’t need to buy something expensive in order to have a great headboard! This DIY project is simple and produces a beautiful result. You can do it in any color you want so that it fits your décor.

  2. Dear Diane, Just one question in regards as to what you used to hold up the rod…it’s hard to see in the picture and I’m a visual person….could you show us the attachment used to hold up the rod? Thanks! As always your site is a wealth of information and inspiration. I’m not sure if I passed this on to you but here in my bookcase I have your first book from many years ago! Keep on with the wonderful job you do in inspiring and helping us all in our efforts to improve our homelife! Carolyn

  3. Your DIY projects are great and I like your decorating ideas. Personally, I bought my furniture online from Furnishr, they have nice designs and stylish furniture. After reading your article, I might try DIY somedays tho.

  4. OMG! I love your headboard idea!!! Soooo clever! :) Enjoy your blog so much! Happy New Year.

  5. Clever ideas!! A gorgeous bed! The colors are great, my son would love if did that for his room I am sure. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Diane –I have said it before and I will say it again—-you are not just a pretty face—You amaze me with what you can do and you do it so perfectly. Congratulations my dear and all best wishes fo a wonderful N ew Year. Betty.

  7. Love it! Have been looking to purchase a headboard for my bedroom, but am difficulty committing to a style. This idea will allow me to change the “headboard” often. Thank you!!!

  8. This is a great idea! I think I will try a leopard print in our guest room!

  9. OMG……I just found your site and I LOVE it. I cannot wait to try some of these projects. I am not creative so this is great. I would love for you to make a sewing tutorial video. I have been sewing a little while but am not very good. Thank you for your site

  10. I did this same idea for headboard several years ago, though I actually sewed it from fabric the customer requested. Great idea for saving money as well as if bedroom space is limited, the bed can be pushed much closer to the wall than if a regular headboard was used.

    Love your idea!

  11. This is adorable and so clever! I love the glass knobs and as always love the hardware on the slider – beautiful. So clean and bright.

  12. If that isn’t clever! I’ve got a headboard that I’ve never liked, and this idea would be perfect for my bedroom… I just think it’s wonderful. You have such a knack for finding the perfect answer to decorating without spending high dollar moneys! I really like the plaid, too, I think there is nothing quite like plaids for picking up colors!

  13. Why did you choose a platform style bed frame? What keeps the box spring from sliding? What is the final height of the bed? I’m in the market for a new frame so this is an interesting idea for me.

    1. Hi Patricia – I originally was going to make a solid bottom platform bed out of plywood, but the room is small and the bed is a king size and I thought it would look too solid for the more airy look I am after. I wanted to make the room feel as airy as possible and like the fact that with a platform bed you do not need a dust ruffle. A traditional bed frame with wheels needs a dust ruffle to hide the frame. I also like the modern look of the platform bed. The height of the platform in 10″. It is also sold in a 14″ height. The height of the bed is 29″. The boxspring is light weight but the mattress is super heavy. The weight of it is what keeps it from moving. There is also a lip inside the frame that the mattress or boxspring can fit into. I hope this helps. I really like the frame since you can see under it and it keeps the room looking clutter free. :-)

  14. Never mind the ideas, I’d like to know where you find the energy and time for all these projects? And then you sit down and type out rather explicit directions? Directions even I can understand. And then you clean up your mess, photograph and post. Amazing!
    Seriously, I sit down to read your post, click on this link, then another, then still another…and soon forget what I was reading in the first place. I have an idea! Raffel off the opportunity to come spend a week shadowing you. You are so very talented. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Susan – Thank you for the nice note :-) I look at my blog as my full-time job, so I get up Monday-Friday and work 9-5. The nice thing is I get to do it all from the comfort of my home and can decide to take an afternoon off to go shopping or to do something fun any time I want which helps with energy renewal. I do wear many hats and some days it can get a little overwhelming which is one of the reasons I have hired my daughter to help me out with a few back end of the blogs things and social media. Fun idea to have a raffle…a Day with Diane. :-) I am going to start making videos showing how I do things. They might not be great at first, but once I get the hang out of creating them, I will be able to show me doing projects in real time.

      1. I want in on that raffle! And I might be willing to pay for it….who am I kidding? I AM willing to pay for it!